Once again we will be offering one UK birder between the age of 16 - 18* the opportunity to win the Cameron Bespolka Scholarship to attend Cornell Lab of Ornithology Bird Event, in Ithaca, New York.

Date: 25th - 28th June 2020 (departure from UK on 24th June)

Applications are now closed

This annual Young Birders Weekend brings teenagers together who have a passion for birds and who are interested in pursuing a career in this field. The participants will meet people who have successful careers that involve birds in a variety of ways from ornithological researchers, tour leaders, computer scientists to audio specialists as well as have an opportunity to discuss bird trends. This programme is held at Cornell University in Ithaca, near New York.

The Young Birders Event will feature: 

  • two days of field trips
  • presentations by Cornell Lab of Ornithology staff including professors, researchers, and students who will share various ways to incorporate birds into a career
  • eBird and field notes workshop
  • sound recording workshop
  • tour of the Cornell Lab including the Macaulay Library and Museum of Vertebrates
  • dinner with Cornell Lab Directors and staff

This trip will be sponsored by the Cameron Bespolka Trust and cover flights, transfers, the whole event which includes meals, accommodation, all transportation during the weekend . Some personal spending money is all that will be needed.

 Applications close 14th February 2020

Download Application Form


Scholarship Winner 2019

Alex Chapman

Alex Chapman

Congratulations to Alex 

Read more


What previous winners thought of the event


Amy Hall
Amy Hall
Winner 2016

"These people were so friendly and passionate, and I am proud to call them my friends. I still receive emails from them and hope to see them again someday. "

Amy's report »

Max Hellicar
Max Hellicar
Winner 2017

"The Cornell Young Birders' Event 2017 was absolutely amazing. It was a privilege to learn so much from those at the top of the profession which I hope to go into."

Max's report »

Elliot Montieth
Elliot Montieth
Winner 2018

"What an incredible experience it was... this once in a lifetime trip really has opened my eyes and given me a massive boost of determination as well as clarifying what I want to do with my life."

Elliot's report »

Alex Chapman
Alex Chapman
Winner 2019

"To say I am grateful would be an understatement. Only now has it hit me just how amazing the event, the people involved and the place were"

Alex's report »

* Preference will be given to those applicants who will start their final year of school in 2020.